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The Adventures of Maya the Bee

Waldemar Bonsels

Book Overview: 

The Adventures of Maya the Bee is an exciting tale for children of all ages. Themes of growth and development of courage and wisdom are found, as well as the extreme joy and satisfaction that Maya experiences in the beauty of creation and all creatures. Her ultimate and innate loyalty to her Nation of Bees is acted out in the final heroic scenes. This story gives us the delightful sense of having seen a small segment of the world through a Bee’s eyes.

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Book Excerpt: 
. . .Miss Loveydear swung through the green rushes out over the surface of the water. Maya heard her singing in the sunshine. She stood and listened. It was a fine song, with something of the melancholy sweetness of a folksong, and it filled the little bee’s heart with mingled happiness and sadness.


Softly flows the lovely stream

Touched by morning’s rosy gleam

Through the alders darted,

Where the rushes bend and sway,

Where the water-lilies say

“We are golden-hearted!”

Warm the scent the west-wind brings,

Bright the sun upon my wings,

Joy among the flowers!

Though my life may not be long,

Golden summer, take my song!

Thanks for perfect hours!

“Listen!” a white butterfly called to its friend. “Listen to the song of the dragon-fly.” The light creatures rocked close to Maya, and. . . Read More

Community Reviews

Many years ago I gave this book to my former elementary school teacher; I was happy to find out later that she read it to every generation of students until she retired.

Waldemar Bonsels masterfully crafted a book in which the insect world is a metaphore/allegory of the humans'. Its stories are ab...more

What a beautiful, funny, moving, amazing book!

A German children's classic, first published in 1912, and all but forgotten in its original form nowadays. Everybody in this country knows Maja the bee from a charming Japanese anime series of the '70s and the still omnipresent merchandising spawned...more

I really enjoyed narrating this book. I put a lot of energy into "doing the voices", which was so much fun. The story itself is a bit grim at times, but Maya has so much personality one cannot help love her.

Cocuk kitaplarını okudukca bazi çocukların ozenilmesi beklenebilecek kotu seyler oldugunu goruyorum ve bu durum hosuma gitmiyor.

Mesela bu kitapta da Maya'nin naifligi, sevimliligi ve pozitifligi evet guzel ve örnek alinmasi gereken durumlar. Ama ayni zamanda boceklerin birbirlerini yiyisleri, na...more

Tykkäsin tästä kirjana enemmän kuin animaatiosarjana. Maija Mehiläinen kulkee läpi monipuolisen hyönteismaailman joutuen monenlaisiin ongelmiin erilaisten petojen kanssa, ja ihmisenkin hän lopulta kohtaa. Tykkäsin myös kirjan humoristisesta otteesta joissain kohdin. Tuli mieleen Muumien tietty hö...more

Waldemar Bonsels' Maya the Bee is full of story and feeling, and it also happens to be beautifully written, with the vocabulary and diction and wonder of other great children's books of this era--this is a book that rivals The Wizard of Oz, or Wind in the Willows.

In addition to its lush diction-...more

la prima grande sorpresa fu scoprire che le avventure dell’ape sulla cui sigla, nel 1979, avevo imparato con qualche incertezza a fischiare le aveva lette anche mia nonna più di mezzo secolo prima.
la seconda è stata, solo cinque o sei anni fa, scoprire per caso che dietro il romanzo ispiratore sc...more

Хората често говорят за пропастта между поколенията, за непрестанно променящия се свят, за нови ценности и интереси... Ето защо на мене ми е особено мило, когато открия нещо непреходно, издържало теста на времето, което служи като мост между децата ми и моето собствено детство. В средата на 80-те...more

Little Maya, a newly born bee, emerges from the hive on her first flight into the world and is astounded by all she sees. "Oh, how beautiful it is out here in the great world, a thousand times more beautiful than in the dark hive. I’ll never go back there again to carry honey or make wax. No, ind...more

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